NYCWFFCelebrating its 10-year anniversary, the New York City Wine & Food Festival aims to draw awareness and raise funds to help end hunger. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for NYCWFF) By Bianca Herron

More than 50,000 people attended last year’s New York City Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF), which serves as an interactive platform where attendees can connect with their favorite chefs and culinary personalities.

Presented by Coca-Cola, this year the festival will celebrate its 10-year anniversary and strives to continue drawing awareness and raise funds to help end hunger.

Since it’s founding, 100 percent of the festival’s proceeds have benefitted hunger-relief organizations Food Bank For New York City and No Kid Hungry. To date, NYCWFF has raised more than $10 million for its charities.

This year’s festival will be held October 12-15 at various venues across New York City, however Piers 92 and 94 serve as the festival’s culinary epicenter of activity during the weekend, hosting many of its signature events. 

With more than 150 partners - including the Food Network & Cooking Channel and Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits - attendees will be able to sample a wide array of wines and spirits, discover new products, and taste carefully crafted dishes created by world-class talent and up-and-coming chefs. Additionally, the New York City Wine & Food Festival will have more than 300 chefs/restaurants present at 70 events that take place throughout its celebratory weekend.

One of the festival’s signature events taking place at Pier 94 on Saturday, Oct. 14 and Sunday, Oct. 15, is the Grand Tasting presented by ShopRite. The event features Samsung® Culinary Demonstrations, which showcases live demos from Food Network & Cooking Channel personalities, plus book signings and various wine, spirits and food tastings that all take place within NYCWFF’s 135,000-square-foot culinary playground.

Other fan-favorite events include the Burger Bash® hosted by Rachael Ray, Tacos & Tequila hosted by Aarón Sánchez, Pigs and Pints hosted by Robert Irvine, Greenmarket Brunch hosted by Geoffrey Zakarian, Variety presents Broadway Tastes, Lucky Chopsticks: An Asian Night Market hosted by Andrew Zimmer, and Oyster Bash.

New events that will be held at the 10-year anniversary festival include a celebration of women mixologists and chefs at Femme Fatale with Speed Rack hosted by Anne Burrell, a Family Italian Harvest Party hosted by Giada De Laurentiis and her daughter Jade, a Late-Night Sandwich Eggs-travaganza party, Isreali Brunch hosted by Michael Solomonov and Rooftop Rosé at The Top of the Standard.

“We are also hosting several family-friendly events this year,” festival Founder and Director Lee Brian Schrager says. “Expanding upon the success of last year’s introduction of the Culinary Demonstrations Only ticket at our signature Grand Tasting presented by ShopRite, this year’s line-up also features an ice cream social and Italian Harvest Party that fans of all ages can enjoy.”

The New York City Wine & Food Festival began as a one-night event called SWEET in the fall of 2007. In 2008, Schrager launched the inaugural NYCWFF, which has quickly grown to mirror its sister festival, the Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival, or SOBEWFF.

Ultimately, after 10 years, Lee is most proud that the New York City Wine & Food Festival has raised more than $10 million to help end hunger with Food Bank For New York City and No Kid Hungry.

“We are grateful to all of the talent, partners and fans who support NYCWFF – it takes a village, as they say, and we’re thankful for all that join us to eat, drink and end hunger,” Lee says.

As NYCWFF looks ahead, he concludes, “We want to continue celebrating great wine, food and spirits via unique events that drive awareness and raise funds to help close the gap on hunger in our country.”

JCK Las VegasThe event will feature more than 2,300 exhibitors from around the globe showcasing the latest on-trend collections and technology. By Bianca Herron

More than 23,000 retailers and industry professionals will gather this spring to attend JCK Las Vegas, the jewelry industry’s leading annual trade event. Part of the Reed Jewelry Group division of Reed Exhibitions, JCK Las Vegas will be held at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas June 5 - 8. 

The event will feature more than 2,300 exhibiting vendors from around the globe, showcasing finished jewelry, timepieces, loose gemstones, equipment, supplies, security and business solutions. Attendees will have the opportunity to view thousands of new and trendy styles, collections and technology. 

Each year, JCK Las Vegas aims to bring together the world’s most influential industry professionals in an upbeat environment for order writing, educational sessions and networking.

One major highlight of the show is its end-of-show celebratory event called JCK Rocks the Bowl! It takes place at Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas, the hottest venue on The Strip, on Wednesday evening. 

JCK Talks, a complimentary education program for attendees, is also a notable highlight of the show. The program kicks off Sunday, June 4 - one day before the JCK Las Vegas show floor opens - and continues on Monday, June 5, with a spotlight on JCK’s industry partners called JCK Talks - Afternoon with the Associations.

The event aims to provide retailers with the tools, insights and information necessary to succeed in the current retail climate. Sessions of the event will touch on topics like “Keys to Attracting Customers,” “How to Deal with Key Issues Facing All Jewelry Retailers” and “Understanding Shifts in the Luxury Market.”

In addition, JCK Las Vegas has partnered with the Jewelers Security Alliance -- a nonprofit trade association with nearly 20,000 members -- to launch a new neighborhood pavilion dedicated to security solutions. 

This new destination on the JCK Las Vegas show floor will feature tailored security solution providers whose products and services are designed to keep jewelry businesses safe. Participating vendors will feature physical security solutions, IT security solutions, payment processing, shipping solutions, fraud protection, private security, system integrators, and RFID and tracking technology.

According to JCK Industry Vice President Katie Dominesey, security remains a top priority for both large and small jewelry businesses that are challenged to keep up with new technology that will reduce risks within their businesses. “As the jewelry industry’s premier marketplace, JCK Las Vegas is a natural fit for introducing a dedicated destination on the show floor where vendors can provide critical solutions to keeping retail businesses thriving in today’s world,” Dominesey said in a statement.

Jewelers Security Alliance is also “excited” about its new partnership with the jewelry trade event, President John Kennedy added. 

“Security is a vital issue for jewelers, and buyers at the show will now have a focused opportunity to learn about and order the security protection all jewelers need,” he said. “For exhibitors, the partnership provides a great opportunity to reach a huge, fresh audience of jewelry retailers and manufacturers who do not attend security trade shows, but have extensive security needs. 

“JCK Las Vegas is by far the largest and most important jewelry trade show in the U.S., and this show is the perfect place to bring together buyers and exhibitors which will help to make the jewelry industry safer,” he concluded.

SWEET SNACKS PREVIEWMore than 17,000 attendees will gather to focus on trends, shopper engagement and the state of the market for candy, snack and specialty segments. By Bianca Herron

At the 2017 Sweets & Snacks Expo – the industry’s premier candy- and snack-buying event – providing insight for retailers and wholesalers is the top priority.

During the three-day event held May 23 – 25 at McCormick Place in Chicago, more than 17,000 confectionary and snack professionals from 90 countries will gather to focus on trends, retail technology, shopper engagement and the state of the market for candy, snack and specialty segments.   

Hosted by the National Confectioners Association (NCA), this year at the Sweets & Snacks Expo attendees can check out several educational learning sessions not only before, but also during the show, such as:

State of the Industry – These pre-show briefs focus on the candy, snack and specialty sectors. Attendees will learn from the nation’s most sought-after strategists and category specialists on topics that will help them succeed each morning before the show opens;

Small Business Innovator Award - Designed to recognize companies with net sales of $500,000 and under so incubating companies just starting in the industry have a chance to gain recognition along with well-established companies;

Destination Retail – Retailers can get hands-on with technology and merchandising to shape the way they engage with shoppers; and

Specialty Market – See nearly 200 companies displaying the latest in premium, and natural and organic.

The Sweets & Snacks Expo will also showcase more than 160 new exhibitors, with a total of nearly 800 companies, including McKee Foods, maker of Little Debbie snacks, and Clif Bar.  

“We know brands like Little Debbie and Clif Bar have options when it comes to choosing which shows to exhibit at,” National Confectioners Association Vice President of Industry Affairs Larry Wilson said in a statement. “We are honored that they recognize the value the Sweets & Snacks Expo will offer each of their established businesses as they look to gain even greater penetration across all core channels in the marketplace.”

 57A0384The IRCE event will provide attendees with solutions-driven educational sessions about e-commerce, including marketing trends. By Michelle Soriano

To excel in e-retail, you need to have the right strategies, technologies and connections in place to stay competitive. The Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition (IRCE), the must-attend event for e-commerce and retail professionals, has what you need to stay ahead in your business. Taking place June 6-9,2017, at Chicago’s McCormick Place West, this gathering of nearly 10,000 professionals is where experts, insights and innovation converge.

Knowledge is more than power – in e-commerce, it’s profit. IRCE offers practical, relevant education sessions – in six workshops and ten tracks – that cover the topics e-retailers want to learn about, from marketing trends, B2B-specific challenges to the latest technology and more. Our experts know exactly how to translate the information you need into the results you want. 

Find solutions to your most pressing challenges, and come away with actionable answers and practical tactics for building your sales and your brand. This year, the agenda has been expanded to include a dedicated track for the fashion/apparel/home furnishings industry, as well as two new workshops, focusing on direct-to-consumer and design and usability.

The adjacent expo hall boasts nearly 600 of the top technology and solution providers. Your company needs to stand out in the crowded e-commerce marketplace, and we have the technologies to keep your sales growing. Whether you’re looking to build loyalty, optimize search or drive revenue across every channel, you’ll find what you need here to keep you ahead of your competition.

When it comes to building your professional network, IRCE knows that there’s nothing better than connecting face-to-face. That’s why we’ve designed an unbeatable experience that brings you together with e-retail leaders, expert speakers and peers facing similar challenges. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to share insights, trade experiences and solidify relationships, all in a professional environment that facilitates connections.

Don't miss our main stage speakers, including Shark Tank's Barbara Corcoran and Under Armour. For mre information, check out IRCE's educational programming and tracks agenda:

Wednesday, June 7

Track: Fashion: Try it On!

10:30-11:30 a.m. – “How to Win the Sale When Going Head to Head with Your Own Brand”. Speaker: Jose Nino, Vice President of E-Commerce Digital Marketing for Perry Ellis International.

1:15-1:45 p.m. – “Knock It Off! Tactics to Combat Counterfeits”. Speakers: Alan Behr, Partner and Chairman of Fashion Practice for Phillips Nizer LLP and Zach Toczynski, Director of Global Brand Enforcement for Levi Strauss & Co.

1:45-2:15 p.m. – “Preserving Brand Value on Marketplaces”. Speakers: Matt Kubancik, President of Founder Street Moda and Tony Chvala, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer for

3:15-3:45 p.m. – “Best in Show: Apparel Innovations”. Speaker: Lauren Freedman, Senior Vice President of Digital Strategy and Chief Merchant for the etailing group.

3:45-4:15 p.m. – “Fashion Apps: What’s in, Hot and Not”. Speaker: Lauren Kaufman Witten, Vice President of Luxury for Retail L2.

4:15-4:45 p.m. – “Live Reviews: Is Your Site On Trend or a Fashion Faux Pas?”. Speaker: Scott Kincaid, Vice President of User Experience for Usability Sciences.

Thursday, June 8

Track: Marketplaces

10:30-11:00 a.m. – “The Marketplace Pioneer—What’s Next at the Amazon Marketplace”. Speaker: Peeyush Nahar, Vice President for Amazon Marketplace.

11-11:30 a.m. – “Where It All Began – eBay Today and Tomorrow."

1:15-1:45 p.m. – “The State of Online Marketplaces: Who Offers What to Whom”. Speaker: Fareeha Ali, Senior Research Analyst for Internet Retailer.

1:45-2:15 p.m. – “How to Figure Out Which Marketplaces You Should be Selling On”. Speakers: Andrew Vagenas, Chief Executive Officer for Pharmapacks and Nathan Gordon, CIO for Christmas Central.

3:15-3:45 p.m. – “Advertising on Amazon: How to Implement a Large-Scale Ad Strategy on the Amazon Marketplace”. Speakers: Gavin Herbert, Manager of Digital Marketing for Mophie and Rick Backus, Chief Executive Officer for CPC Strategy.

3:45-4:15 p.m. – “Marketplace Financials: Do the Numbers Work for You?”. Speakers: Ian MacDonald, Director of E-Commerce for Silver Star Brands and Jason Boyce, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of

4:15-4:45 p.m. – “Make Sure Your Marketplace Sales Fit Into Your Broader Strategy”. Speaker: Fahim Naim, Founder of

Friday, June 9

Workshop: Direct to Consumer Workshop

8:15-8:45 a.m. – “Mapping the New World: How to Make the Transition to Consumer Selling”. Speaker: Callie Lushina, Vice President of Marketing for BioElements.

11:15 a.m. -12 p.m. – “Getting the Right Content to Where Consumers Are”. Speakers: Christian Santiago, Strategic Partner Development Lead for Google Manufacturer Center, Rob Gonzalez, Co-Founder of Salsify, and Sonesh Shah, Director of Digital for Bosch Power Tools.

12:30-1:15 p.m. – “Live Review: Does Your Site Have That Consumer Appeal”. Speakers: Adam Brown, Executive Creative Director for Gorilla Group and Kevin Eichelberger, Founder & CEO of Blue Acorn.

Michelle Soriano is the director of marketing for the IRCE. 

Chef Rodriguez and Rachael Ray at SOBEWFF Burger Bash

Satiate your taste buds in Miami Beach this year at the annual Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival.

By Janice Hoppe-Spiers

Sixteen years, $24 million dollars and more than 90 events continue to attract foodies to Miami Beach every February for five days for the annual Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival (SOBEWFF). With so much excitement surrounding the festival and events to attend, an extra day was added this past year to accommodate festival fans’ need for more.

“We’ve created a robust program of events for the festival’s 16th year,” says Lee Brian Schrager, founder and director who also serves as senior vice president, communications & corporate social responsibility for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. “With an array of dinners, tastings, seminars and parties showcasing a variety of cuisines, wines and spirits from around the world, guests will find plenty of ways to satiate their taste buds at this year’s festival.”

Signature events return as the festival kicks-off with Barilla’s Italian Bites on the Beach hosted by Valerie Bertinelli and Alex Guarnaschelli. The famous Burger Bash goes into its 11th year evolving into the Heineken Light Burger Bash hosted by Rachael Ray. Last February’s Amstel Light Burger Bash included fireworks and an 850-pound cake in celebration of its 10th anniversary.

Fan-favorites will also return to Miami Beach this year, including Tacos After Dark, Oyster Bash hosted by Josh Capon, Fun and Fit as a Family featuring Goya Kids Kitchen, Chicken Coupe hosted by Andrew Carmellini and the Wine Spectator Wine Seminars presented by Bank of America.

Tags: ,

Check Out Our Latest Editions! 

rm 594a cover

rmcover vol59i3

rmcover vol59i3 1

Latest New & Notable Products

rmnn vol59i3

Contact Us

Retail Merchandiser Magazine
150 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 900
Chicago, IL 60601


Click here for a full list of contacts.

Latest Editions

Spread The Love

Back To Top